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Adaptive Mountain Biking For All

Funder: Craig H Neilsen Foundation

Funding period
USD 63 K
Funding amount
Adaptive Mountain Biking For All will expand Disabled Sports Eastern Sierra's existing mountain bike program a wide variety of athletes with spinal cord injuries and other disabilities. DSES changes the lives of individuals with disabilities by offering year-round outdoor sports and activities, creating inspiring challenges, providing expert instruction and adaptive equipment, and rallying the community to comfortably accommodate people with disabilities. We facilitate inspiring sports and recreation opportunities that improve athletes' physical, mental, and emotional health to dramatically improve quality of life.

With support from the Neilsen Foundation, DSES will expand our fleet of mountain bikes, develop instructor skills and professional certifications, and offer scholarships to better accommodate athletes with SCIs interested in mountain biking. We will purchase five adaptive off-road cycles including a mix of hand- and foot-pedaled recumbent bikes, some with pedal assist technology. The addition of recumbent cycles ridden in an upright sitting position, some with special quad specific adaptations, will allow athletes with cervical to lumbar SCIs to access thrilling mountain bike terrain. We will also purchase a cargo trailer to store and transport the bikes to collaborative, off-site events.

As adaptive mountain biking becomes more popular and technology improves, we receive numerous requests for lessons and trials of various equipment. Finding the equipment best suited for individual body type and mobility issues can be a catalyst to life changing outdoor sports experiences. Expanding our fleet will allow us to help athletes try a variety of equipment and discover new abilities while exploring otherwise inaccessible terrain.

To enhance our mountain bike programs, we will further develop the knowledge and professionalism of our instructors by offering training and exams to achieve International Mountain Biking Association (IMBA) certifications. Certified individuals offer a higher level instruction and allow us to accommodate athletes as their comfort and skills improve allowing us to coach beginners through strong intermediate riders. By providing scholarships as a compliment to professionally certified instruction and state-of-the-art equipment, athletes with SCIs will benefit from exhilarating, empowering, mountain bike lessons regardless of financial need.

Each year DSES serves more than 50 people with Spinal Cord Injuries (SCIs) through daily lessons, Paralympic development camps, and military sport programs. Specializing in skiing, snowboarding, and cycling for individuals with physical and cognitive disabilities, we provide a variety of modern adaptive equipment to accommodate anyone who walks or rolls through our doors. In 2018-19, we are excited to expand our program to allow more athletes to take advantage of the world-class mountain biking terrain at Mammoth Mountain and throughout the Eastern Sierra.
(CHN: COandI chn:wdg)
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    1117 Public Health and Health Services